Jean-Charles Blais Panoply #3 2000

  • Not on view

Blais, who came to the forefront of the international art scene in the 1980s, situates the human figure at the core of his practice, often pointing to the body’s vulnerability and fragmentation in the modern world. Recently Blais has turned to textiles and sewn fragments of clothing for his materials—a direction he explores in this lithograph.

Unusual in format and technique, Panoply #3 features a photographically rendered women’s garment overlaid with a disembodied head. Enhancing the work’s eerie presence, Blais printed the image on a sheet of rubber — a material he favors for its textural similarity to skin. He then cut along the contours of the tunic and head, playing the role of tailor, butcher, and artist all at once. Seemingly mutilated and flayed for display, this shadowy figure tacked to the wall communicates a palpable sense of violation and absence.

Discussing this work, Blais has said, "I feel that every picture of someone—whether a photograph, a painting, or a fashion image—has more or less something to do with ghosts." Images, he suggests, both mechanical and hand-made, are feeble specters meant to stand in for robust human complexities. Titled after the armor of a warrior, Panoply #3 hints at the body’s susceptibility to the ravages of representation.

Publication excerpt from The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA HIghlights since 1980, New York: The Museum of Modern Art , p. 190.
Lithograph on rubber
composition (irreg.): 57 3/4 x 22" (146.7 x 55.9 cm); sheet (irreg.): 57 3/4 x 22" (146.7 x 55.9 cm)
Atelier Bordas, Paris
Atelier Bordas, Paris
The Associates Fund
Object number
© 2023 Jean-Charles Blais
Drawings and Prints

Installation views

We have identified these works in the following photos from our exhibition history.

How we identified these works

In 2018–19, MoMA collaborated with Google Arts & Culture Lab on a project using machine learning to identify artworks in installation photos. That project has concluded, and works are now being identified by MoMA staff.

If you notice an error, please contact us at [email protected].


If you would like to reproduce an image of a work of art in MoMA’s collection, or an image of a MoMA publication or archival material (including installation views, checklists, and press releases), please contact Art Resource (publication in North America) or Scala Archives (publication in all other geographic locations).

MoMA licenses archival audio and select out of copyright film clips from our film collection. At this time, MoMA produced video cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. All requests to license archival audio or out of copyright film clips should be addressed to Scala Archives at [email protected]. Motion picture film stills cannot be licensed by MoMA/Scala. For access to motion picture film stills for research purposes, please contact the Film Study Center at [email protected]. For more information about film loans and our Circulating Film and Video Library, please visit

If you would like to reproduce text from a MoMA publication, please email [email protected]. If you would like to publish text from MoMA’s archival materials, please fill out this permission form and send to [email protected].


This record is a work in progress. If you have additional information or spotted an error, please send feedback to [email protected].